We just returned from the dentist for a cleaning and checkup. Unfortunately our appointment was at 2:00pm, which really pushed nap time back. They were very efficient though. We were finished and back in the waiting room to pay by 2:20 and we were home with the boys in their beds by 3:00. Not too bad really.
We had good incentive to hurry and to come straight back home because it is really yucky outside today. We started the day with temps in the 50's I think and now we are below freezing and it is windy and misting and very very cold. The wind chill factor must be quite low.
The boys did a great job. This was their third time to the dentist. The very first time, we were really disappointed in the dentist and his way with children. We switched to a different dentist in the same practice and she was really great on the second visit. This visit was the first time the boys actually went into the exam area without us. The hygienist came out and called their names and they both walked in a bit cautious. We were watching through a window. They talked them both into the chairs and showed them the tools, explained things to them and let them pick out the flavor of cleaning stuff and also a small ball to hold in their hand. So far, so good.
The problem came up when they wanted them to lie back in the chair. That was where it became a bit too scary. We could see Ben shaking his head no when she was patting the chair and trying to talk him into it. Nick actually started crying and then they waved us in. We were able to quickly get them back into a good place and they both ended up lying back and doing a great job after that.
They were given lots of stickers and small toys for their bravery. I had promised them a surprise if they did very well at the dentist so I am trying to decide which of their Christmas presents I want to go ahead and give them now.
Now they are both sleeping. They are really doing great with this new sleeping thing and I think I am very close to being able to move further away from their door. My next move will be to the couch in the nearby game room. Once they are doing well with that, it will be easy to move downstairs from there, I think. So, I think it won't be very long before we have two little guys who are once again very good about falling asleep without us in the room.
I forgot to mention what I decided to use for an incentive for getting them to stay in their beds at night. If they stay in their bed, they get a coin the next morning to put in their piggy bank, which is just one of those cheap, plastic food holders with a lid that I put a slot in so they can put their coins in it. They love it. Sometimes they get pennies, sometimes nickels, sometimes dimes and sometimes quarters. They tend to always want quarters though, I guess because they know that is what we use for those animal ride things at the mall or grocery store. When they have enough money, they can choose to use it to buy something at the dollar store or to ride one of the rides at the grocery store or mall.
Nick is one of these kids who has such a strong will that I have to be extremely consistent with him. If I give in on something just one time, he will test, test, push, push, trying to get me to give in again. I have to set very clear rules and boundaries and I have to be very consistent in maintaining them. He is such a great kid though. He has such a happy disposition and I love hearing him walk around singing. He also really enjoys getting a rise out of his brother though, which can be frustrating. He loves picking on Ben, taking his toys, pushing/pulling him, tackling him, etc. He is always doing something to Ben. Much of the time, Ben enjoys it but there are times when he does not, understandably. So I have been working on Nick on this.
Overall, behavior around here is very good right now, which I thank God for. When things were not going so well recently, I prayed and prayed that God would help me understand them and show me the best way to deal with the issues we were experiencing. I am happy to say that God is faithful and He always answers prayers.
With behavior so good these days, we are just having so much fun together and every one's attitudes are so good. I am loving this age too. They are able to carry on a conversation and they have such funny things to say. Their imaginations are simply wonderful and I love to watch them play and talk to themselves. Ben talks to himself a lot while he is playing and it is so cute. He has really gotten much better about picking up his toys and helping to clean up when asked and doing it with a good attitude. They are both such good little boys and such a joy to be around (most of the time:). It is fun that they are now at an age where they get some jokes/teasing and will laugh with me about things. I have a tendency to say 'you crack me up' or 'I cracked up laughing' about something funny sometimes and they have picked this up. It is amazing how quickly they learn. They were helping me fold some clothes this morning and Nick is actually getting pretty good at folding the washcloths.
Well, enough of all of the gushing:). I must go find a surprise for the boys.